NYS Workers Compensation Board Urges World Trade Center Volunteer Fund Claimants To Apply For The Zadroga Act Fund

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The NYS Workers' Compensation Board‘s Office of the Advocate for Injured Workers has been a major supporter for World Trade Center Volunteers in receiving compensation for their illnesses and injuries related to the events of 9/11.  All claimants receiving benefits under the WTC Volunteer Fund are being encouraged by the Workers' Compensation Board to apply for the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund Under the James Zadroga Act.

 

The World Trade Center Volunteer Fund and the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund (VCF) are two separate entities. The WTC Volunteer Fund was set up in 2002 by Congress to provide Workers' Compensation benefits for unpaid Volunteers who assisted in clean-up, recovery and rescue efforts during the event of 9/11 and the aftermath. Typically, unpaid Volunteers are not entitled to receive workers' compensation benefits but an exception to the law was made for 9/11 Volunteers only.

 

The James Zadroga Act was signed on January 2, 2011 by President Obama in order to provide medical care and compensation to individuals who have suffered illnesses, injuries and death as a direct result of the events of 9/11 and the aftermath including clean-up, recovery and rescue efforts.  The Zadroga Act paved way for the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund of 2001 to be re-opened to new applicants.   Applying to the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund will not forfeit any benefits provided by World Trade Center Volunteer Fund. All new applicants must register with the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund no later than October 3, 2013.

 

The NYS Workers' Compensation Board also encourages claimants to participate in the World Trade Center Health Program which is another segment to the James Zadroga Act. If you are planning to apply to the VCF, it is a good idea to participate in the WTC Health Program, not only for the benefit of free health care for your 9/11 related illnesses, but because it is recognized by the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund as an extremely valuable source of medical documentation when reviewing cases. The VCF holds the WTC Health Program in high regard because the doctors that participate in the World Trade Center Health program specialize in 9/11 related illnesses. This can be an advantage to your 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund case.

 

Angela Luongo, a Paralegal with Turley, Hansen & Partners contributed to the writing of this post.

Facts About 9/11 Victims Compensation Under The Zadroga Act

Facts About 9/11 Victims Compensation Under The Zadroga ActWhat is the Zadroga 9/11 Victims Compensation Fund?

On January 2, 2011, President Obama signed the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act of 2010. James Zadroga was a NYPD Detective who died from inhaling toxic dust while working at Ground Zero. He inspired Congressional passage of federal funds that would provide for healthcare and compensation benefits to those who became sick or died as a result of exposure to Ground Zero toxins.

Who’s Eligible to File a Claim?

How Do I File a Claim?

Find out the answers to these questions by downloading our brochure.

If you have questions, please call us toll free at 1-855-WTC-INFO and visit our Victims Compensation Fund Information website at www.zadrogaclaimsinfo.com.

Zadroga Act 9/11 Health Benefit Informational Public Meeting Set for March 3rd

 

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All 9/11 victims and first responders who want more info on the health benefits contained in the new Zadroga 9/11 Act should be aware of the just announced NIOSH informational public session scheduled for 3/03/2011 in lower Manhattan.   Troy Rosasco and Daniel Hansen  will be attending from our firm and will report that night on our impressions and analysis.

Attendance is limited to the first 300 due to space limitations, but their will be a call-in audio feed for those who cannot attend. The toll-free call-in number is 1-800-619-8873; pass code 8693287.  More information about the Zadroga Act meeting is explained in Jon Gelman's excellent recent blog post here.

Zadroga 9/11 Act Questions and Answers from Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney

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Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney, and her top-flight office staff, provided a wealth of helpful information today on the Zadroga Act as interpreted by the reputable and unbiased Congressional Research Service (CRS).

Some teachers leave for home at the end of the last period of the day. Some stay late to give extra help to their students. If Congresswoman Maloney were a teacher, she would be staying late to benefit her pupils. She is a real professional and is showing it once again, to the benefit of all 9/11 victims.  

Who is considered an eligible "Survivor" under the Zadroga 9/11 Act?

This question is complicated, and for now, the best thing for any WTC victim or First Responder to do is read part of the actual Zadroga statute below, and then call an attorney with any questions:

`SEC. 3321. IDENTIFICATION AND INITIAL HEALTH EVALUATION OF SCREENING-ELIGIBLE AND CERTIFIED-ELIGIBLE WTC SURVIVORS.

`(a) Identification of Screening-Eligible WTC Survivors and Certified-Eligible WTC Survivors-

`(1) SCREENING-ELIGIBLE WTC SURVIVORS-

`(A) DEFINITION- In this title, the term `screening-eligible WTC survivor' means, subject to subparagraph (C) and paragraph (3), an individual who is described in any of the following clauses:

`(i) CURRENTLY IDENTIFIED SURVIVOR- An individual, including a WTC responder, who has been identified as eligible for medical treatment and monitoring by the WTC Environmental Health Center as of the date of enactment of this title.

`(ii) SURVIVOR WHO MEETS CURRENT ELIGIBILITY CRITERIA- An individual who is not a WTC responder, for purposes of the initial health evaluation under subsection (b), claims symptoms of a WTC-related health condition and meets any of the current eligibility criteria described in subparagraph (B).

`(iii) SURVIVOR WHO MEETS MODIFIED ELIGIBILITY CRITERIA- An individual who is not a WTC responder, for purposes of the initial health evaluation under subsection (b), claims symptoms of a WTC-related health condition and meets such eligibility criteria relating to exposure to airborne toxins, other hazards, or adverse conditions resulting from the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks as the WTC Administrator determines, after consultation with the Data Centers described in section 3305 and the WTC Scientific/Technical Advisory Committee and WTC Health Program Steering Committees under section 3302.

The Administrator shall not modify such criteria under clause (iii) on or after the date that the number of certifications for certified-eligible WTC survivors under paragraph (2)(B) has reached 80 percent of the limit described in paragraph (3) or on or after the date that the number of enrollments of WTC responders has reached 80 percent of the limit described in section 3311(a)(4).

`(B) CURRENT ELIGIBILITY CRITERIA- The eligibility criteria described in this subparagraph for an individual are that the individual is described in any of the following clauses:

`(i) A person who was present in the New York City disaster area in the dust or dust cloud on September 11, 2001.

`(ii) A person who worked, resided, or attended school, childcare, or adult daycare in the New York City disaster area for--

`(I) at least 4 days during the 4-month period beginning on September 11, 2001, and ending on January 10, 2002; or

`(II) at least 30 days during the period beginning on September 11, 2001, and ending on July 31, 2002.

`(iii) Any person who worked as a cleanup worker or performed maintenance work in the New York City disaster area during the 4-month period described in subparagraph (B)(i) and had extensive exposure to WTC dust as a result of such work.

`(iv) A person who was deemed eligible to receive a grant from the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation Residential Grant Program, who possessed a lease for a residence or purchased a residence in the New York City disaster area, and who resided in such residence during the period beginning on September 11, 2001, and ending on May 31, 2003.

`(v) A person whose place of employment--

`(I) at any time during the period beginning on September 11, 2001, and ending on May 31, 2003, was in the New York City disaster area; and

`(II) was deemed eligible to receive a grant from the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation WTC Small Firms Attraction and Retention Act program or other government incentive program designed to revitalize the lower Manhattan economy after the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

`(C) APPLICATION AND DETERMINATION PROCESS FOR SCREENING ELIGIBILITY-

`(i) IN GENERAL- The WTC Program Administrator in consultation with the Data Centers shall establish a process for individuals, other than individuals described in subparagraph (A)(i), to be determined to be screening-eligible WTC survivors. Under such process--

`(I) there shall be no fee charged to the applicant for making an application for such determination;

`(II) the Administrator shall make a determination on such an application not later than 60 days after the date of filing the application;

`(III) the Administrator shall make such a determination relating to an applicant's compliance with this title and shall not determine that an individual is not so eligible or deny written documentation under clause (ii) to such individual unless the Administrator determines that--

`(aa) based on the application submitted, the individual does not meet the eligibility criteria; or

`(bb) the numerical limitation on certifications of certified-eligible WTC survivors set forth in paragraph (3) has been met; and

`(IV) an individual who is determined not to be a screening-eligible WTC survivor shall have an opportunity to appeal such determination in a manner established under such process.

`(ii) WRITTEN DOCUMENTATION OF SCREENING-ELIGIBILITY-

`(I) IN GENERAL- In the case of an individual who is described in subparagraph (A)(i) or who is determined under clause (i) (consistent with paragraph (3)) to be a screening-eligible WTC survivor, the WTC Program Administrator shall provide an appropriate written documentation of such fact.

`(II) TIMING-

`(aa) CURRENTLY IDENTIFIED SURVIVORS- In the case of an individual who is described in subparagraph (A)(i), the WTC Program Administrator shall provide the written documentation under subclause (I) not later than July 1, 2011.

`(bb) OTHER MEMBERS- In the case of another individual who is determined under clause (i) and consistent with paragraph (3) to be a screening-eligible WTC survivor, the WTC Program Administrator shall provide the written documentation under subclause (I) at the time of such determination.

`(2) CERTIFIED-ELIGIBLE WTC SURVIVORS-

`(A) DEFINITION- The term `certified-eligible WTC survivor' means, subject to paragraph (3), a screening-eligible WTC survivor who the WTC Program Administrator certifies under subparagraph (B) to be eligible for follow-up monitoring and treatment under this part.

`(B) CERTIFICATION OF ELIGIBILITY FOR MONITORING AND TREATMENT-

`(i) IN GENERAL- The WTC Program Administrator shall establish a certification process under which the Administrator shall provide appropriate certification to screening-eligible WTC survivors who, pursuant to the initial health evaluation under subsection (b), are determined to be eligible for follow-up monitoring and treatment under this part.

`(ii) TIMING-

`(I) CURRENTLY IDENTIFIED SURVIVORS- In the case of an individual who is described in paragraph (1)(A)(i), the WTC Program Administrator shall provide the certification under clause (i) not later than July 1, 2011.

`(II) OTHER MEMBERS- In the case of another individual who is determined under clause (i) to be eligible for follow-up monitoring and treatment, the WTC Program Administrator shall provide the certification under such clause at the time of such determination.

`(3) NUMERICAL LIMITATION ON CERTIFIED-ELIGIBLE WTC SURVIVORS-

`(A) IN GENERAL- The total number of individuals not described in paragraph (1)(A)(i) who may be certified as certified-eligible WTC survivors under paragraph (2)(B) shall not exceed 25,000 at any time.

`(B) PROCESS- In implementing subparagraph (A), the WTC Program Administrator shall--

`(i) limit the number of certifications provided under paragraph (2)(B)--

`(I) in accordance with such subparagraph; and

`(II) to such number, as determined by the Administrator based on the best available information and subject to amounts made available under section 3351, that will ensure sufficient funds will be available to provide treatment and monitoring benefits under this title, with respect to all individuals receiving such certifications through the end of fiscal year 2020; and

`(ii) provide priority in such certifications in the order in which individuals apply for a determination under paragraph (2)(B).

`(4) DISQUALIFICATION OF INDIVIDUALS ON TERRORIST WATCH LIST- No individual who is on the terrorist watch list maintained by the Department of Homeland Security shall qualify as a screening-eligible WTC survivor or a certified-eligible WTC survivor. Before determining any individual to be a screening-eligible WTC survivor under paragraph (1) or certifying any individual as a certified eligible WTC survivor under paragraph (2), the Administrator, in consultation with the Secretary of Homeland Security, shall determine whether the individual is on such list.

 

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Turley Hansen and Partners, LLP, is pleased to offer Zadroga Claims Info as a public resource for information on the compensation and health benefits available under the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act of 2010. Authored by a team of experienced attorneys...

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